Legislative and regulatory amendments
Building and Plumbing Amendment (Solar Water Heater and Other Matters) Regulations 2023
On 28 November 2023 , Victoria introduced the Building and Plumbing Amendment (Solar Water Heater and Other Matters) Regulations 2023.
These changes amend the Building Regulations 2018 to provide a regulated schedule for the application of certain provisions of the Building Code of Australia (BCA).
The amendments include:
- Delayed implementation for livable housing provisions and requirements to consider roof loads to support solar photovoltaic panels until 1 May 2024, in line with other National Construction Code (NCC) livable housing and energy efficiency provisions that also come into effect on 1 May 2024 . Until then, practitioners may continue to use relevant NCC 2019 requirements.
- Modifications to Form 2 – Building Permit in Schedule 4 (of Building Regulations 2018), to require reporting where an exemption or partial compliance has been granted against some clauses in BCA Volume Two – Livable Housing Design (step-free access path requirements). This will become enforceable when the livable housing provisions are adopted on 1 May 2024.
- Effective immediately, any type of solar or heat pump water heater that meets relevant energy efficiency performance standards can be installed in new Class 1 homes, regardless of whether reticulated natural gas is available for connection, meaning the requirement for a gas-boosted solar water heater in those areas has been removed. For more information, visit the VBA's Plumbing regulatory framework webpage.
On 28 November 2023, after the Building and Plumbing Amendment (Solar Water Heater and Other Matters) Regulations 2023 were made by the Governor in Council.
Description of change
NCC 2022 Volume One
New sub-regulation included to confirm delayed implementation until 1 May 2024 for the following provisions:
|Schedule 4 – Form 2|
NCC 2022 Volume Two
Amended to include reporting of exemption from or consent to partial compliance of livable housing clauses H8P1(a) and H8D2(2).
The Amendment Regulations can be found on the Victorian Legislation website.
Yes, building practitioners can voluntarily apply Part G7 Livable Housing Design and clauses B1P2(a) and B1D3(a)(iv) before 1 May 2024. These provisions will be mandatory from 1 May 2024.
An exemption provided to clause H8P1(a) or H8D2 of NCC 2022 Volume Two will need to be reported on Form 2 Building Permit. They relate to provision of step-free access to some buildings. This reporting item will be enforceable from 1 May 2024 with all other NCC 2022 livable housing provisions.
Building and Plumbing Amendment (National Construction Code and Other Matters) Regulations 2023
On 26 September 2023, the Governor in Council amended the Building Regulations 2018. The amendments enable:
- Delayed implementation for energy efficiency, condensation management and livable housing requirements until 1 May 2024. Until then, practitioners may continue to use relevant NCC (National Construction Code) 2019 requirements.
- Regulatory integration of the latest fire safety sprinkler standards referenced in the Victorian Schedule 10 to NCC 2022 Volume One.
- Removal of duplicated requirements for bushfire protection for Class 9 buildings.
- Updated references to reflect the new clause referencing system of the NCC 2022.
On 26 September 2023, when the Building and Plumbing Amendment (National Construction Code and Other Matters) Regulations 2023 were made by the Governor in Council.
Description of change
5, 29(b), 125, 128(1), 145(2), 145(3), 146(2), 147(2), 147(4), 147(5), 151, 152(2), 152(3), 164(1), 164(2), 165, 166F(1), 235, 236(4), 236(5), 237, 240(1), 240(2) and Item 5 of Table in Schedule 3
Amended BCA clause references to align with new clause referencing system introduced in BCA 2022
New regulation to confirm extended transitional arrangements for NCC 2022 provisions of energy efficiency, condensation management and livable housing, with a commencement date of 1 May 2024
New regulation to vary the versions of AS 2118.1, FPAA101D and FPAA 101H referenced in Vic Table 2 of Schedule 2 to Schedule 10 of NCC 2022 Volume One, to refer to the latest versions.
This regulation has been revoked to align with new Part G5 requirements introduced in NCC 2022 Volume One. A Victorian variation has been included in Part G5 to include application of Class 4 parts of those buildings to address the regulatory gap of revoking Regulation 158.
Schedule 4 – Form 2
Amended to include requirement to report exemption from or consent to partial compliance relating Clause H8D2(2) of BCA Volume Two.
The Amendment Regulations can be found on the Victorian Government Legislation website.
The bushfire protection requirements for Class 9 buildings are found in NCC 2022 Volume One Part G5. These include prescriptive requirements for specified Class 9 buildings located in a bushfire prone area with a Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) not exceeding 12.5 determined in accordance with AS 3959. Where the specified Class 9 building is located in an area with a BAL exceeding 12.5, a performance solution is required to demonstrate compliance with the relevant performance requirements.
The applicable versions as included in the amendment regulations are as follows:
Automatic fire sprinkler systems – Part 1, General systems
|2017 (incorporating amendments 1 and 2)|
|FPAA101D||Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Design and Installation – Drinking Water Supply||2021|
|FPAA101H||Automatic Fire Sprinkler System Design and Installation – Hydrant Water Supply||2018 (incorporating amendment 1)|
No, this reporting item is only limited to Form 2 – Building Permit of the Building Regulations 2018.